MATCH REPORT: Farnborough FC 4 Aldershot Town 1 (A) (Hampshire Senior Cup)

Farnborough FC progressed into the next round of the Hampshire Senior Cup with a 4-1 victory over a mixed Aldershot Town side on Tuesday night at the Easy as HGV Stadium.

An own goal from KJ Osu, a Ricky Holmes header and goals from Selim Saied and Nic Ciardini gave Boro the victory, as Elis Watts scored a late consolation in the last few minutes of the game.

It was a much-changed Aldershot Town side, with a number of First-Team players, academy graduates and also academy prospects all featuring within the game and it was one of the Shots Academy graduates Watts who was heavily involved in the opening proceedings of the game.

From the first minute, the midfielder created a great opportunity to score, after cutting inside before seeing his goal-bound effort blocked and cleared by the Farnborough keeper Dante Baptiste.

Watts was involved again just a few minutes later, with the midfielder linking up well with forward Ibby Akanbi, before seeing his close range effort saved by Baptiste once again.

Despite this, it would be Farnborough who take the lead in the tie with young defender KJ Osu looking to block a low cross, but unfortunately saw the ball go his own net in difficult rainy conditions just six minutes in.

The mixed Aldershot Town side responded well to finding themselves a goal behind early on, with an Alfie Saunders free-kick finding captain for the evening George Fowler in the Farnborough penalty area, but saw his header go just over the bar in the 15th minute.

Shortly after this, Farnborough found their second goal of the evening, with a ball to the back post from the left-hand side finding Ricky Holmes who headed home in the 17th minute.

Aldershot Town continued to look for an opening goal, but were denied again by Baptiste, with Tommy Willard’s deflected effort pushed clear of the Farnborough goal in the 30th minute.

However, Boro found themselves further in front in spectacular fashion, with Selim Saied finding the far-right corner in the 36th minute.

Aldershot Town did find the back of the net before half-time with Saunders firing a great strike into the back of the Farnborough net, but the ball came off the referee in the build-up and the goal was chalked off in the 42nd minute.

This disallowed goal ended a half that saw Farnborough three goals to the good, going into the mid-way interval as the mixed Aldershot Town line-up looked to respond in the second-half.

The second-half started with The Shots having the best of the early opportunities, with Ibby Akanbi’s effort inside the penalty area tipped away by Baptiste, as the Boro keeper was also on hand to divert Willard’s rebound effort away from his goal in the 49th minute.

A series of opportunities fell Aldershot Town shortly after, but Baptiste was there again to deny Akanbi, Willard and Fowler with their respective efforts inside Farnborough FC penalty area.

Farnborough did create a great opportunity to score, but fantastic defending on the line from Ben Mandeville saw the scoreline remain at three in the 75th minute.

The home side did find a fourth goal in the 82nd minute, with Nic Ciardini scoring from a free-kick just outside the Aldershot Town penalty area.

There was time in the game for Watts to get the goal his performance deserved, cutting inside in the 90th minute to find the far corner as the final whistle blew shortly after this, with Farnborough FC progressing into the third round of the Hampshire Senior Cup.

This in turn, sees The Shots look ahead to their next game in the Vanarama National League, as Wrexham A.F.C. will come to visit the EBB Stadium to take on The Shots this Saturday.

Farnborough FC XI: 1 D Baptiste (G/K), 2 T Leggett, 3 J Oyenuga, 4 S Owens (Rose 64′), 5 C Fearn, 6 A Martin, 7 M Fernandes (Cullen 29′), 8 S Saied, 9 N Ciardini (C), 10 P Hodges, 11 R Holmes (Myers 57′)

Unused Subs: Deering, Paget

Aldershot Town XI: 1 H Keogh (G/K), 2 G Fowler (C), 3 B Mandeville, 4 W Angell (Anderson 88′), 5 K Osu, 6 J Gorman, 7 E Watts, 8 A Saunders, 9 W Aouachria (Horn-Haynes 66′), 10 I Akanbi, 11 T Willard

Unused Subs: Cannon, Walster, Vine